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“Continental Drift”

It’s as if the creatures residing on this planet in these years, the human creatures, millions of them traveling singly and in families, in clans and tribes, traveling sometimes as entire nations, were a subsystem inside the larger system of currents and tides, of winds and weather, of drifting continents and shifting, uplifting, grinding, cracking land masses.

Through the years, much has been said about Continental Drift and probably equally as much about the book’s author, Russell Banks. Born into a blue-collar family, Banks led a tumultuous young life stealing a car and running away from home at 16 only to return and enroll in college before dropping out – leading him to  hitchhike to Florida, where he got married, became a father and was divorced by the time he was 20. And, that’s just the beginning. Read more »


Brownies (Vegan)

Brownies made without pure creamy unsalted butter and fresh eggs seemed impossible to imagine until recently. These were the ingredients – along with cocoa – that made brownies taste so decadent. But, when my daughter decided to lead a vegan life, I started to re-think several recipes because I wanted to make food that all of us would eat; otherwise, I would be chained to the kitchen making separate meals for everyone. Read more »


Cinnamon Sugar Sprouted Lentils

The Perfect Snaque makes a product called Cinnamon Sugar Sprouted Lentils that is deliciously crunchy, high in protein, and low in fat and sugar, despite the use of the word “sugar” in the product name.  Whenever I see the word “sugar,” my first response is to move on but as the company truly states, these snacks are “insanely delicious and ridiculously nutritious.” Read more »


Vegan Carrot Cake

For years, I relied on a carrot cake recipe from the The Silver Palate Cookbook, which was THE cookbook of the 1980’s. Full of carrots, pineapple, coconut, and walnuts, the Silver Palate carrot cake was my ideal of what a carrot cake should be:  moist, sweet, rich, and mile-high. But, as I’ve gotten older, I’m less inclined to put 3 cups of sugar and a cup and a half of corn oil in a cake recipe; and with a vegan daughter, dairy and eggs are not optional ingredients. Read more »



During our lifetime, there are certain dates that cause us to remember where we were when disaster struck. For my parents generation, there was November 22, 1963 and for me, there is September 11, 2001 and December 26, 2004.

The day after Christmas in 2004, I was in Guayaquil, Ecuador waiting for a flight to Madrid, Spain. I had just spent the holiday with my family exploring the Galapagos Islands and was planning to continue on with them to Machu Pichu, Peru but I developed a tooth problem and decided instead to return home to Madrid. At the airport, everyone was glued to the televisions with CNN reporting that a horrific tsunami struck Indonesia, Sri Lanka, and the coasts of the Indian Ocean. At the bottom of the television screen was a counter with the estimated number of deaths increasing by the thousands every few minutes. It seemed unreal. Read more »


Kopali Organic Chocolates

Kopali Organic Chocolates are 100% organic with no refined sugars or animal products. Gluten-free, vegan, and fair trade certified, Kopali Organic Chocolates are pure, energy-packed, and nutrient-dense with an intense deep dark chocolate flavor in every bite-sized piece. Winner of the Socially Responsible Business Award, Kopali Organics supports sustainable farming in making five products that are “so much more than super delicious.”
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Top Ten Family Games, Part 2

Computers, i-pads, and i-pods have diminished the popularity of board games but sitting down with family and friends to play a game is still one of the all-American after dinner activities in our home, especially in the summer when we have no access to a television and intermittent access to the internet.  Everyone has their preferences but we all agree that taking the time to sit down and play the game isn’t just about the game, it’s about sharing time together, talking, laughing, and having fun. Below are a few games bound to bring laughter and fun to your family: Read more »


Cucumber, Tomato and Avocado Salad

Cucumber, Tomato and Avocado Salad is a bright, colorful salad that takes less than 10 minutes to make and tastes fresh and delicious. Filled with a diced seedless cucumber, chopped sweet grape tomatoes, a minced sweet orange pepper, chopped Haas avocado, cilantro, and a dash of Pink Himalayan salt, this salad goes with nearly any main dish. The Cucumber, Tomato, and Avocado Salad is light and refreshing with ingredients that are readily available this time of year. When time is limited, this is a great salad to pull together in minutes. Read more »


“The Burgess Boys”

You have family. You have a wife who hates you. Kids who are furious with you. A brother and sister who make you insane. And, a nephew who used to be kind of a drip but apparently is not so much of a drip now. That’s called family. Read more »


Choomi Cookies

Years ago, I would buy a French cookie called a Croquant Noix de Coco which means ‘crunchy coconut” made by a company called Bonne Maman which my daughter tells me means “nice mom.” Put together, the words somehow convey “crunchy coconut cookies” that nice moms give their kids (or eat themselves, as was the case with me). Read more »